Sunday, December 14, 2014

The End of Obamacare Schadenfreude?

Smitty, the hench-blogger at The Other McCain declares the end of Obamacare Schadenfreude:

#ObamaCare’s Past Schadenfreude, But The Democrat Wreckage Is Still Good
The cumulative damage the Democratic Party has suffered, as well as the casualty rate — half of the 60 senators who supported the bill are since deceased, defeated or retired — has brought its leaders to an unhappy inflection and reflection point. Two years ago, President Obama was reelected to the surprise and delight of Democrats who believed that, not only would his unique coalition provide them with dominance in presidential cycles for the foreseeable future, but that perhaps the ACA backlash had passed. After losing their Senate majority and watching the GOP cement gains across federal offices, statehouses and regions Democrats might have lost for generations, however, buyer’s remorse on healthcare reform has led to angry division inside the party.
The long term economic and societal damage from ObamaCare remains to be seen. It’s too grim and widespread for schadenfreude to be appropriate. Careers have been ended, but the worst perpetrators are still around. . . 
Sorry, Smitty, but the temptation to delight in the misfortunes of one's political opponents is simply too addictive. Besides, I can quit any time I want.

Get your healthcare, and a  Big Gulp*: New way to promote ObamaCare: 7-Eleven
ObamaCare ads will now appear on 7-Eleven receipts at more than 7,000 stores nationwide as government health officials expand their outreach in the second year of healthcare sign-ups.

Information about ObamaCare sign-ups will appear on the bottom of receipts for anyone using a mobile payment company called PayNearMe, which allows bank-less customers to pay in stores like 7-Eleven and Family Dollar.

Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell announced the new partnership with the tech start-up PayNearMe on Thursday at a store in Washington, D.C.
*(offer not valid in Bloombergistan New York City)

Jonathan Gruber is a Liar. Was He a Liar Under Oath?
In a sworn hearing before the House Oversight Committee on Tuesday, Gruber, widely cited in the press over the last few years as an architect of Obamacare, insisted that he did not write any of the health care law himself. "I didn't draft the legislation," he said, later reiterating the claim: "I did not write any part of the Affordable Care Act."

Asked by Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-Wy.) why he claimed in 2012 to have written part of the law, he said that it was "an effort to seem more important than I was," and that he "was speaking glibly."

He seems to have spoken "glibly" on multiple occasions.

As The Hill notes, in a late 2010 lecture to students at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where Gruber is a faculty member, he talked about the health law and described his role in its creation, saying, "Full disclaimer: I'm going to describe it objectively, but I helped write it."

In another 2010 video, captured by C-SPAN and posted at Townhall, Gruber also noted his bias in favor of the law while claiming to have helped write it. "Once again, unabashed, I helped write the federal [health care] bill as well," he said. That remark was made the same month that Obamacare was signed into law.

Two years later, Gruber hadn't changed his story. In a now-infamous 2012 lecture on the law's health exchanges at Noblis, Gruber not only said that states that don't set up exchanges don't have access to tax subsidies, he also referred to the "the one bit of the bill I actually wrote."
Hold him to the full Scooter Libby standard appropriate to Presidential advisers. If his own testimony disagrees with himself, or countless other democrats at the time, he's clearly playing fast and loose with the facts. 30 months, in the hoosegow, a $250,000 fine, and 400 hours of emptying bedpans for Dr. Jon.

And more gloom from Patrick Buchanan: What Jonathan Gruber Got Right
Brought before a House inquisition, MIT professor and Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber burbled a recantation of his beliefs about how that triumph of liberalism had been achieved. Yet, something needs to be said in defense of Gruber.
For while he groveled and confessed to the sin of arrogance, what this Ivy League con artist boasted about rings true.

Here, Gruber explained, is how we got Obamacare passed:
This bill was written in a tortured way to make sure [the Congressional Budget Office] did not score the mandate as taxes. If CBO scored the mandate as taxes, the bill dies. OK? …
Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage. And basically, call it the stupidity of the American voter or whatever … that was really, really critical to get the thing to pass. Look, I wish … we could make it all transparent, but I’d rather have this law than not. …
[I]f you had a law which explicitly said that healthy people pay in and sick people get money, it would not have passed.
Call it the new candor. Yet, is Gruber not right on almost all counts?
Could the Democrats possibly complain if the Republicans used  reconciliation to repeal the bill?

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